The British pharmacy chain recorded double digit growth in Group trading profit (up 12.7 percent), which reached £1.07bn. EBITDA increased 9.2 percent to £1.36bn.
“This is a particularly good performance, given the challenging economic conditions we faced throughout the year,” commented group chief executive Andy Hornby.
Growth in Health and Beauty business
Revenue in the company’s Health and Beauty division came in at £7.5bn, an increase of 5.2 percent. The company’s international markets all recorded positive sales growth with the exception of Russia, where a 25 percent drop in reported revenue was recorded.
In the Beauty and Toiletries category, revenue increased 6.1 percent to £2.18bn. According to Boots, in the UK Beauty category, sales of fragrances and its No7 range were particularly strong. Sun care products, particularly self-tanning products, boosted sales in the toiletries sub-category.
In addition to new No7 product ranges, including the hugely successful Protect and Perfect Intense Beauty Serum that was launched in April 2009, the Boots Extracts Fairtrade range was launched and a new skincare range and Boots Aqua Balance was also announced during the year.
The company highlighted the importance of its private label offerings such as 17 and Botanics, as well as its exclusive ranges such as Soap & Glory, which were identified as ‘very important drivers of revenue and margin'.
Alliance Boots remains optimistic about the year ahead despite lower levels of consumer demand as a result of the difficult economic climate.
“Although we are planning for consumer demand across Europe to remain subdued, we are confident about our prospects for the year ahead,” said Hornby.
The company recently announced the signing of a deal with Procter & Gamble, where the consumer giant will market and distribute the Boots Laboratories brand in Italy. An agreement with supermarket chain Waitrose is also in place, where the two companies are trialing the sales of selected products in each other’s stores.